A Conversation in the Night

“Hey Sharon, she’s talking again!”

“Yeah right, Beth.  She hasn’t been able to even put together two words in a single sentence in over a month now and you want me to believe that she is talking.  You said the same thing the last two nights and both times when I got there I heard nothing.”

“I’m not making this up.  Come quick and hear for yourself.”

Sharon got out of her chair by the front desk.  She was the night duty nurse for the home.  She was responsible for 15 Alzheimer patients and the three night staff including herself.  Most nights were pretty quiet, but the last several nights, Beth kept reporting that one of the patients, Agnes, would talk in her sleep.  Talking in one’s sleep would not be such a big deal except that Agnes was in the final stages of Alzheimer disease and was no longer able to communicate at all with the staff. The last two nights when Beth claimed that Agnes was talking, Sharon walked down to the end of the hall where Agnes’s room was and all she heard was incoherent muttering.  Probably would be the same tonight, but she had to go down and check anyway for the record.

“All right Beth, I’m coming” said Sharon as she walked down the hall.  She thought she could hear someone talking and at first thought it might be one of the patients in one of the other rooms.  However, as she entered Agnes’ room, she could not believe her ears.  It really was Agnes.

“Yes Jake, I understand that it is was hard for you, but it was not your fault.  Stop blaming yourself.  There was nothing that you could have done to prevent my getting Alzheimer’s disease.  There still is no cure for it.  I know we both denied it at first.  We both thought that my memory lapses were just simply the result of growing old.  With so much more to remember year after year, it is amazing that we remember as much as we do.  But you cannot blame yourself.  It ruined your health and see where it got you?  I do remember when that nice couple stopped by with that little girl to tell me that you had died.  It tore me apart inside, but I could not express myself.  I had already reached the point in which I could not respond to people talking to me even though inside I desperately wanted to say something.”

A short pause occurred and then Agnes continued.

“Oh yeah.  You’re right.  I just didn’t recognize them.

There was a pause and both Sharon and Beth thought that was the end of it.  They had turned and were about to leave the room when Agnes continued.

“I know that I will never get better, Jake.  So I’ve been asking God to talk with our son and somehow get him to understand that it is time to let me go.  He cannot think selfishly and try to hold me here.  I feel his thoughts preventing me from leaving.”

Another pause of a few seconds.

“Yes, he did respond back and said that as much as he did not want to see me die, that if there was nothing to cure me and if this disease was ultimately fatal, that he was Ok if I passed.”

A short pause, then Agnes continued.

Yes I know how much it affected him when you died, but you died relatively suddenly.  He was not expecting it.  He knows that my end is near and he understands that you are waiting for me to cross over.”

There was another pause of about a minute.  By this time, both Sharon and Beth figured that they were only hearing one side of a conversation and that the pauses represented the times when the other person in the conversation was talking.  So they waited in the dark to listening for anything else that Agnes might say.  But she remained quiet.  So after about ten minutes, they left the room.  Sharon returned to the front desk and Beth continued her rounds checking on the other patients.

“Ok, Jake, they are gone now.   Thanks for telling me that they had come back into the room to listen again.”

“Agnes, my dear loving wife.  I’ve missed you for so long.  I could feel the pain of not having you by my side affecting my health, but I could not let it go.  Since I died, I’ve been by your side, watching over you and hoping for some improvement, but I received word today from Him that the end is close.  So I used all the power I could gather to communicate with you tonight, to help you cross over.”

“Jake, I waited because I want to talk to our son and tell him that everything will be alright.  It will soon just be him, his wife and his daughter.  I need to talk with him one last time to let him know how proud we are of what he has become.”

“You know that is not possible.  Spirits can talk with the souls of the living, but two living souls cannot talk like we are tonight.  There is no way to talk with him.”

“Do you know if He has told our son that the end is near?”

“Yes He has.  It happened a week ago in their time as he was driving home from work.  Our son was overcome with grief at the news and stopped for a few minutes by the side of the road.  But he finally told Him that he understands and accepts the fact that you need to leave.”

“ So everything is set?  I wish he were here.”

“With him living on the other side of the country, there is no way, especially since you do not appear to be terminally ill yet to alert these nurses.  That illness will occur in the next several weeks and would be extremely painful.  He was not told the nature of the illness that would soon consume your body if it were to be kept alive, but he understands that he has been given the chance to petition God to release your spirit prior to the onset of that disease.  He does not know how close the timing is and so will not be able to be by your side.  But don’t worry, I’ll be with you every second through the end.”

“Jake, I guess I’m ready then.  Please hold my hand.”

Back at the nurses station, the monitor for the bed in Agnes’ room started to beep indicating that the patient’s heart had stopped.  Sharon quickly glanced up and seeing the flat line on the monitor rushed from the desk down to Agnes’ room.  On the way, she called to Beth to follow her.  As they reached the room, they thought the saw a soft glow moving out toward the window.  It must have been a passing car.  They checked for a pulse and for any indication of breathing but found no sign.  They knew Agnes was gone.

To be continued…


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